Trump Keeps Promoting a Baseless Murder Conspiracy Theory, Despite Pleas From the Widower

The tweets, which aim to smear Joe Scarborough, have yet to be removed.

Chris Kleponis/ZUMA

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

President Trump on Tuesday continued to baselessly suggest that Joe Scarborough, the MSNBC host and former Florida congressman, murdered his former staffer Lori Klausutis, despite mounting condemnation over his relentless promotion of the entirely debunked conspiracy theory. The latest tweet promoting this meritless allegation came shortly after the New York Times published a letter from Klausutis’ husband urging Twitter to remove the president’s tweets about his late wife, who died in 2001 from a fall stemming from an undiagnosed heart condition.

“I’m asking you to intervene in this instance because the President of the United States has taken something that does not belong him—the memory of my dead wife—and perverted it for perceived political gain,” Timothy Klausutis wrote to Twitter’s Jack Dorsey last week. 

“My wife deserves better.”

While it’s not clear if Trump has read the letter, he appeared to indirectly acknowledge some of the criticism on Tuesday. “The opening of a Cold Case against Psycho Joe Scarborough was not a Donald Trump original thought,” he tweeted. “This has been going on for years, long before I joined the chorus.” Of course, by tweeting about the false theory once more, Trump was again fanning its flames.

Trump appears to be indulging in the conspiracy theory in order to smear Scarborough, an outspoken critic of the president. That effort comes as the United States approaches 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate